Kenyan volleyball team withdraws from Afro Cup tourney

Nairobi- Kenya (PANA) -- Next month's Africa Women's Cup of Cups volleyball tournament in Nairobi suffered a major setback over the weekend when Kenya Pipeline Club withdrew from the contest, citing internal problems.
Pipeline, the reigning Africa Club queens, were among the three Kenyan teams picked for the annual event.
But in a move that will steal the thunder from the tournament, Pipeline officials said they had no option but to withdraw from the event following the exodus of key players to the United States.
They are pursuing higher education in the United States after securing scholarships during last year's Sydney Olympic Games where Kenya represented Africa.
Though Kenya tumbled out in the preliminaries in Sydney, the players impressed US coaches who offered them scholarships.
A Pipeline official said the playing unit was badly depleted and fielding the current under-strength side in the continental event would be imprudent.
The players - Edna Chepngeno, Jackline Makokha, Gladys Nasikanda and Kenya Commercial Bank's Phyllis Anyango - joined Hellen Elele at Lee University College in Texas.
The event is a setback to Kenyan volleyball lovers who are bracing for topflight action during the event set for the Moi International Sports Centre in Kasarani, Nairobi.
Pipeline's absence may be a blessing in disguise for Al-Ahly who whitewashed the Kenyans 3-0 in last year's tournament in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
But earlier in the year, Pipeline atoned the defeat, pipping them 3-2 to lift the Africa Club Championship in Algiers.
At least six teams are expected to feature in the tournament.
Among them are Telkom Kenya, Kenya Commercial Bank, Al Ahly, Aswab of Tunisia and Jeshi Stars of Tanzania.

20 novembre 2001 17:11:00

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